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Treatments for Breast Cancer


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Treatment options for cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and hormone therapy.

There are several surgical options depending on the severity of the cancer.

A lumpectomy removes the tumor and a small amount of neighboring tissue.

Mastectomies involve removing the entire breast and its tissues.

Sentinel lymph node removal is typically performed in addition to lumpectomies and mastectomies.

Here, your surgeon will remove the lymph node closest to the tumor and check it for the presence of cancer cells.

If this node is clean, it may not be necessary to remove more lymph nodes.

A prophylactic mastectomy is a preventative surgery for high-risk women that removes the entire breast to lower the risk of breast cancer.

Radiation therapy uses high-energy x-rays or other types of radiation to kill the cancer cells or to keep them from growing.

Internal radiation therapy can be used to treat the cancer from the inside of the body with needles, wires, or catheters.

Chemotherapy is a treatment that uses drugs to stop the growth of the cancer cells by either killing them or inhibiting their cell division.

Once the drugs enter the bloodstream they can travel and reach cancer cells throughout the body.

Some types of breast cancers need hormones in order to grow and spread.

Hormone therapy works by blocking the cancer cells from receiving the natural hormones that they need.

Tests can show if your breast tumor has these receptors and if it is a good treatment option.